My Latest New Book

My Latest New Book
Fishing Different

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Alabama Rig--Good or Bad ?

There is a good deal of controversy about the emergence of the Alabama Rig for bass fishing. The configuration of this rig has actually been around for years and was called the Umbrella Rig, a name that still exists for that configuration. The Umbrella Rig was and still is used for deep water trolling and was designed to create an image to the fish, of a small school of bait fish swimming along in unison.The Alabama Rig is simply a smaller version of the Umbrella Rig with shorted rig arms and a resulting lighter weight. This smaller version permits the rig to be used as a casting rig, not just for trolling. One version of the Alabama Rig is shown below.
The controversy that has developed results from the existance of 5 different hooks that have been causing injuries to the fish as they tangle in the rig when attacking it. Some professional fishing organizations are also banning the use of this rig in tournaments because they feel it takes some of the sporting challenge away. Regardless of the controversy, this rig does indeed catch fish.

I have not been a big fan of the Alabama Rig for two main reasons. First, as a casting rig, it is heavy and requires heavier equipment for its use.Repeated use as a casting rig easily tires the fisherman. Also as a casting rig, its weight makes control of the rig difficult, especially in shallow water. My main complaint as a trolling rig is its cost and ease with which it is hooked up and lost. When completely outfitted with jigs and plastic bait attached, the cost is  close to $20, which is very expensive for most non-professional fishermen. To help reduce loss of this rig, I have done some testing and constructed a chart that shows the relationship between the boat speed when trolling, and the depth that the rig sinks at different boat speeds. This will help a fisherman keep the rig far enough off the bottom to prevent loss of the rig. There will of course be some variations in the numbers based on the size and type of jigs and plastic bait used. For my tests I used 1/8 ounce jig heads and three inch plastic minnows. The chart that I developed is shown below.

No comments:

Post a Comment